Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Atik 414EX a possible near live imaging camera for EAA

This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
124 replies to this topic

#1 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 15 December 2014 - 05:19 PM

Sony has released an upgrade replacement for the ICX285 with the ICX825.  I believe Atik is the first company to provide a CCD imager using this sensor.

http://www.atik-came...uct/atik-414ex/

 

I've seen the Atik 314L+, the Atik 460EX, and the Starlight Xpress SX9C on NSN delivering some very nice near live images.  The best of which has been the 460EX run in 2x2 binning mode.  The unfortunate aspect of running a 460EX color camera in binning mode is that color is lost, but the images are excellent and better than any video cameras I've seen.  These near live images are generated from single frame exposures or live stacking for dimmer objects.  The resolution of the 414EX is 1392x1040 which will provide similar detail as the 2x2 binned 460EX.

 

I'm hoping that this new the Atik 414EX will provide enough sensitivity so that one can do color single frame near live imaging.  The specs seem to indicate that it can, and like I said I've seen less sensitive cameras do a fair to excellent job.  The write up for the 414EX states that it is 60% more sensitive than the 314L+ and even more sensitive than the 460EX.  Now whether the 4i4EX is as sensitive unbinned as the 460EX is in 2x2 binning remains to be seen thus same resolutions remains to be seen, but atleast it will be in color.  I can envision having both b&w and color 414EXs so that one can do narrow band near live imaging besides color.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Edited by DonBoy, 15 December 2014 - 06:59 PM.


#2 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 15 December 2014 - 07:47 PM

Thanks for posting this Don, is there an indication of price? I also like the higher resolution the Atix cameras can afford, the main issue I have with the 460EX is price, that said its something I'm working on.

#3 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 15 December 2014 - 08:38 PM

Starizona has it listed at $1489



#4 RightWill

RightWill

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 146
  • Joined: 09 Apr 2014

Posted 15 December 2014 - 09:48 PM

Well that is a cheaper price than the 460. I do like the images I've seen on NSN from a guy named Tom, but he has a very high quality scope as well. both together produce some amazing images. 



#5 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 16 December 2014 - 02:04 AM

Don, I also noticed that Atik released the 4120EX, which has the ICX834 and is compared by Sony to the ICX694 http://www.sony.net/...4/icx834_e.html since they are both 'Type 1' format. Note that the ICX834 is basically 4k resolution.

 

http://www.atik-came...uct/atik-4120ex



#6 chasing photons

chasing photons

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 287
  • Joined: 19 Mar 2013

Posted 16 December 2014 - 09:25 AM

Sony has released an upgrade replacement for the ICX285 with the ICX825.  I believe Atik is the first company to provide a CCD imager using this sensor.

http://www.atik-came...uct/atik-414ex/

 

I've seen the Atik 314L+, the Atik 460EX, and the Starlight Xpress SX9C on NSN delivering some very nice near live images.  The best of which has been the 460EX run in 2x2 binning mode.  The unfortunate aspect of running a 460EX color camera in binning mode is that color is lost, but the images are excellent and better than any video cameras I've seen.  These near live images are generated from single frame exposures or live stacking for dimmer objects.  The resolution of the 414EX is 1392x1040 which will provide similar detail as the 2x2 binned 460EX.

 

I'm hoping that this new the Atik 414EX will provide enough sensitivity so that one can do color single frame near live imaging.  The specs seem to indicate that it can, and like I said I've seen less sensitive cameras do a fair to excellent job.  The write up for the 414EX states that it is 60% more sensitive than the 314L+ and even more sensitive than the 460EX.  Now whether the 4i4EX is as sensitive unbinned as the 460EX is in 2x2 binning remains to be seen thus same resolutions remains to be seen, but atleast it will be in color.  I can envision having both b&w and color 414EXs so that one can do narrow band near live imaging besides color.

 

 

This is very cool!!  I posted in the Atik Forum last June requesting an Atik Series 4 cooled camera based on the ICX825, with improved performance over the Atik 314L+, pointing out that I thought this would be a good candidate for near real time observing.  Maybe someone was listening??     ;)

 

Apparently Atik does not see an issue with cooling a plastic packaged image sensor because, as far as I know, it is not available in ceramic packaging.  This camera, in conjunction with on the fly processing software, could offer a significant improvement in image quality over the currently available astro video cameras.

 

Next I want Atik and the other astro camera manufacturers to venture into CMOS territory and try out the new IMX174 and IMX249 sensors at 2.3MP.  ASI ZWO looks to be the first out the door with a non-cooled IMX174 dedicated astro camera.  These new CMOS sensors may be close to matching CCDs at much lower cost.

 

Yes!!  This is very good news.  The new Atik 414EX just made my day!  Thank you Atik!



#7 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 16 December 2014 - 10:43 AM

Regarding cooling plastic, it's always been possible to do, it just needs to be done in a controlled way so as to not shock the package, whereas a ceramic is more robust against large & fast temperature dips. That is a general statement by the way, I've not seen data on how these particular packages handle temp swings, and I think it's largely irrelevant since I'm assuming that since they have shown up in these cameras they have survived, and I'm happy to see it! If I remember correctly there was a thread on the ICX 825, It will be interesting to look it up.



#8 chasing photons

chasing photons

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 287
  • Joined: 19 Mar 2013

Posted 16 December 2014 - 10:52 AM

The ICX825 thread is mine.

 

http://www.cloudynig...-sensor-useful/



#9 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 16 December 2014 - 05:30 PM

Ahhhh nevermind lol! Forgot about where that one went. Ok so, any idea if Astrolive will support this camera?

#10 chasing photons

chasing photons

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 287
  • Joined: 19 Mar 2013

Posted 16 December 2014 - 11:03 PM

Ahhhh nevermind lol! Forgot about where that one went. Ok so, any idea if Astrolive will support this camera?

 

 

I can't answer for Kyle Goodwin, but the AstroLive list of supported cameras shows that Atik Series 4 cameras are supported but are untested, with the exception of the 428EX, which is fully tested.  That is because Kyle owns the 428EX.  My guess is that many features would work in AstroLive, but the software might have to be tweaked for individual Atik models.  I wouldn't be surprised if Kyle decides to get a 414EX for himself.  Atik makes good cameras, no doubt about that.

 

http://astroprecisio...a-compatibility


Edited by chasing photons, 16 December 2014 - 11:09 PM.


#11 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 16 December 2014 - 11:26 PM

Here are some interesting sensitivity comparisons (note that video cameras like the MallinCam have adjustable gain making them more sensitive than the reported sensor figures):

 

ICX694 is 900mV - 460EX
ICX285 is 1200mV - 314+L
ICX418 is 1300mV - MallinCam Xtreme standard sensor
ICX428 is 1600mV - b&w  MallinCam Xtreme
ICX825 is 2000mV - 414EX
ICX828/829 is 3200mV - Mallincam Xterminator or Lodestar X2

 

As a side note if the ICX825 can be used in a video camera configuration it could possibly provide higher resolution images in a time frame comparable to video cameras that use the ICX418, ICX428 or ICX828 sensors.  Thus 1340x1080 vs 640x480.



#12 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 17 December 2014 - 12:00 AM

I don't see why gain couldn't be applied in a purpose built camera (among other possibilities), and the output be sent to both HDMI and USB, for either direct viewing with HDMI or over USB for semi-real time improvement on a computer. That said, I've never really been keen on doing such development myself, so I don't know if there are reason's why. Otherwise in the past, from what I understand, it was mostly of a question of having a sensitive enough chip to be worth developing higher resolution (HD) dedicated astronomy video camera with. This may be such a chip, we will see once an Atik 414EX with Astrolive (or whatever software) shows up on NSN or here.

 

P.S. which one to start with Color or B&W?


Edited by Relativist, 17 December 2014 - 12:28 AM.


#13 chasing photons

chasing photons

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 287
  • Joined: 19 Mar 2013

Posted 21 December 2014 - 04:45 PM

Is anyone getting close to pulling the trigger on the Atik 414EX, or at least getting an itchy trigger finger?  It certainly looks like a winner on paper.  I've watched Atik 314L+ broadcasts on NSN and the images are very nice with beautiful detail and tight, round stars.  I've also seen images from the 428EX and 460EX cameras.

 

Last night I was lucky to catch Tom (in southern Indiana) broadcasting with a mono Atik 460EX mostly in 7nm Ha on a 7 inch refractor at F5.3 (955mm focal length).  This 6MP ICX694 camera and telescope combination gives a field of view of 35' x 43' and an image scale of 0.94 arcsec/pixel with its 4.54 micron pixels.  This is clearly a good match and it showed with absolutely beautiful images of nebula including the crescent, cone, crab, flaming star, running man, flame and horsehead.

 

When I see results like these it gives me renewed hope that, after I move to the southwest high plains desert, I will be able to put together a near real time observing system of OTA, mount, camera and software that will accomplish what I have wanted to do for quite some time.  I'm definitely looking forward to seeing results with the new Atik 414EX.


Edited by chasing photons, 21 December 2014 - 04:45 PM.


#14 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 21 December 2014 - 04:57 PM

I think there are several of us waiting for someone to bit the bullet and b'cast on NSN with a 414.  I personally would like to see how a 414 OSC would work.  Tom typical runs the 460 in 2x2 bin mode for NSN to keep within the 3 minute rule.   Hopefully the 414 in unbinned mode will be close in performance to the 2x2 binned 460.  We'll have to wait and see.



#15 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 21 December 2014 - 05:13 PM

So let's talk software, is there any out there that would let me broadcast with my Mac, or is windows going to be a requirement. (I can use parallels if needed but prefer not to in order to reduce the load on my 2010 Macbook)

#16 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 21 December 2014 - 05:29 PM

Curtis,

 

The included Atik software is PC based.

 

Maybe for the Mac Nebulosity 3 with CamTwist.  I personally like using Parallels with OSX so that would be my choice if Nebulosity doesn't cut the mustard.  

 

Tom uses Sequence Generator Pro with VirtualDub and WebcamMax.

 

The biggest issue I see with the older Macs is the graphics hardware, newer units do way better with video. 



#17 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 21 December 2014 - 06:26 PM

Don,

 

The reason I ask about Mac software, is from what I remember one of the forum members, NickK-UK, in his signature stated he wrote drivers for Atik cameras.

 

http://www.cloudynig...211091-nickk-uk

 

There is also this thread:

 

http://stargazerslou...100-example-app

 

I guess I will PM him :)

 

P.S. I got an answer from Nick here http://www.cloudynig...-use/?p=6357210 looks like it should work fine.


Edited by Relativist, 22 December 2014 - 11:09 PM.


#18 Don Rudny

Don Rudny

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1635
  • Joined: 21 Mar 2013

Posted 23 December 2014 - 12:49 AM

Hi All,

 

I've been doing some analysis on this new camera and I'd like to know if I'm on the right track.  I have the new Lodestars with the Sony 828/829 sensor, so I did a comparison.  Let's say you want frame M27 nicely.  I checked my AstroAid program and an 8" SCT would do it at F5 with the Lodestar.  Now the resolution is 752 x 582 or about .44MP.  If I use the Atik 414 to get the same image scale, I would need about F6.8.  That almost doubles the exposure time.  DonBoy gave a nice table of sensitivity and that indicated that the Lodestar was over 1.5 times more sensitive.  That means to get the same image scale and the benefit of the higher resolution, the Atik would need about three times the exposure of the Lodestar.  It's probably no big deal when you're looking at 10 to 15 seconds for bright DSO's, but let's say you need a minute or 90 seconds for something with the Lodestar.  Now you're talking three to five minutes with the Atik.  Same logic applies to the Exterminator and the Lodestar.  Am I doing this correctly?  Please let me know if I'm off base in any way because I would like to think that higher resolution can be obtained without sacrificing exposure time.  But, I'm thinking that the Atik 414 may not be the answer.  Hopefully someone will test it soon.

 

Thanks for any feedback.



#19 David B in NM

David B in NM

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1027
  • Joined: 05 Sep 2010

Posted 23 December 2014 - 05:07 AM

Don,

 

You can cheat the system by using binning and lose some resolution.  The captures will be faster as Don indicated in his OP.

 

IMHO, I believe people who think an increase in sensitivity equates to an increase in speed are incorrect.  I don't believe this is the case.  If one looks at sensitivity graphs the basis is a wave length (colors) not time.

 

The most important piece of the puzzle is the camera's DSP.  It controls the process.  I have an ICX633 ccd controlled by an RJ10 DSP.  I also have an ICX639 ccd controlled by an RJ10 DSP.  The ICX633 is rated at 3800mv while the ICX639 is rated at 2250mv.  Both cameras capture the same target, using the same OTA and FR, in the same amount of time.  The ICX633 ccd is not faster.  But, it does provide richer colors.

 

The kicker is, my AVS DSO with an RJ11 DSP using a ccd rated at about 2400mv can capture the same target, using the same OTA and FR faster than the ICX633 RJ10 camera in color.  The MC Micro and LN300 can do the same but in mono.

 

The two paragraphs above illustrate the importance a camera's DSP plays. 

 

1.  A better DSP and a less sensitive ccd can provide faster image acquisition than another DSP and more sensitive ccd.

2.  A 3800mv and 2250mv ccd using the same DSP need the same amount of time to acquire the same image. 

 

If the ATIK has a better DSP than the LS it could perform better.  Eventually, someone will buy one and broadcast with one...but...it won't be me!

 

David B in NM


Edited by David B in NM, 23 December 2014 - 05:09 AM.


#20 Relativist

Relativist

    Cosmos

  • *****
  • Posts: 8151
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2003

Posted 23 December 2014 - 11:27 AM

Don,

 

Generally, it's not entirely fair to the camera in my opinion to be forced into the same framing as a smaller format IMO. If similar framing is desired, there is also the option of increasing aperture. Something I am keen to do if the camera works out. Also I noticed that the 828/829 are so sensitive they rarely are required to go for longer exposures, which bodes well for the 825. We will see though. I would have preferred that the pixel size stayed about the same as the 828/829 and that the format increased a bit more to get us the higher resolution. Most of use have the capability to support 2" if it is required.



#21 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 23 December 2014 - 01:13 PM

 

Hi All,

 

I've been doing some analysis on this new camera and I'd like to know if I'm on the right track.  I have the new Lodestars with the Sony 828/829 sensor, so I did a comparison.  Let's say you want frame M27 nicely.  I checked my AstroAid program and an 8" SCT would do it at F5 with the Lodestar.  Now the resolution is 752 x 582 or about .44MP.  If I use the Atik 414 to get the same image scale, I would need about F6.8.  That almost doubles the exposure time.  DonBoy gave a nice table of sensitivity and that indicated that the Lodestar was over 1.5 times more sensitive.  That means to get the same image scale and the benefit of the higher resolution, the Atik would need about three times the exposure of the Lodestar.  It's probably no big deal when you're looking at 10 to 15 seconds for bright DSO's, but let's say you need a minute or 90 seconds for something with the Lodestar.  Now you're talking three to five minutes with the Atik.  Same logic applies to the Exterminator and the Lodestar.  Am I doing this correctly?  Please let me know if I'm off base in any way because I would like to think that higher resolution can be obtained without sacrificing exposure time.  But, I'm thinking that the Atik 414 may not be the answer.  Hopefully someone will test it soon.

 

Thanks for any feedback.

 

 

Don,

 

To response to your query I have included 4 screen captures of what combination of camera and scope at a specific f ration would look like.   I use an 8" SCT and I would use it at f5 with the 414 and if I wanted a larger screen image I would just zoom or crop it.  The 414 has twice the resolution of the Lodestar.  Doing a 2x2 bin of the 414 will yield the same resolution as the lodestar but exposure will be approximately halved compare to it operating without binning.  Note if it is the color 414 then binning will result in b&w.  If one likes the image size that is obtained with the Lodestar and the 8" SCT at f5 then one should consider a 11" at f5 with the 414 with higher resolution.

 

Check out the 4 ilustrations from CCD Calc

Attached Thumbnails

  • Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 12.42.02 PM.png

Edited by DonBoy, 23 December 2014 - 01:20 PM.


#22 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 23 December 2014 - 01:17 PM

Atik 414 with 8" SCT at f6.3

Attached Thumbnails

  • Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 12.42.37 PM.png


#23 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 23 December 2014 - 01:17 PM

Atik 414 with 8" at f5

Attached Thumbnails

  • Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 12.43.02 PM.png


#24 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 23 December 2014 - 01:19 PM

Atik 414 with 11" at f5

Attached Thumbnails

  • Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 1.18.10 PM.png


#25 DonBoy

DonBoy

    Apollo

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 1242
  • Joined: 06 Sep 2007

Posted 23 December 2014 - 01:29 PM

Here is an ExView HAD special (non-existent) with 8" at f5  I just doubled the pixels of the chip used for the Loadstar to make up this fictitious sensor.  Another option is to obtain the 8.5um pixel sensor in the Sony A7S.

 

Using this higher resolution 8+um hypothetical sensor would result in the same resolution for the same image size image obtained with the Lodestar using the same scope and f ratio.  The only way to take advantage of a larger pixel more sensitive sensor is to use a larger aperture scope at a fast f ratio.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Screen Shot 2014-12-23 at 1.27.32 PM.png

Edited by DonBoy, 23 December 2014 - 01:44 PM.



CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics